Lucio Fontana

Argentine-Italian painter and sculptor Lucio Fontana (1899-1968) is considered founder and representative of Spatialism. Followers of ‘Spazialismo’ (the Italian translation), which arose in the late 1940’s, intended to synthesize colour, sound, space, movement, and time into a new type of art. Fontana published his ideas of the movement in his Manifesto Blanco in Argentina in 1946. He proposed a ‘spatial’ attempt in art instead of a ‘virtual’ approach, combining art and science through the use of techniques such as neon lighting and television. He also cut and stabbed paintings, which are also considered Spatialist works.

Fontana has also ties to the Italian Arte Povera (literally ‘poor art’) during 1967-72. Just as ‘Impressionism’, this term was initiated thanks to an art critic. Artists connected to this movement took a radical stance against established institutions of government, industry, and culture, resulting in unconventional art by the use of different materials and styles.

Work by Fontana is found in important international museums and collections all over the world, such as the Guggenheim Museum and the MOMA in New York, the Kunstmuseum Basel, Haifa Museum in Israel, the Kröller-Müller Museum in Otterlo (Netherlands) and many more.


Selected Solo Exhibitions

2016 TEFAF Maastricht, SmithDavidson Gallery, Maastricht, The Netherlands

2013 Destroy the Picture: Painting the Void, 1949–1962 - Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA), Chicago, IL

2013 The 60s In The Guggenheim Collections. From Informel To Pop Art - Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice

2009 Lucio Fontana. Le scritture del disegno - Fondazione Arnaldo Pomodoro, Milan 

2009 Lucio Fontana - Zeichen und Zeichnung - Museum Liner, Appenzell, Switzerland 

2008 Lucio Fontana, Scultore, Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome, Italy (solo)

2008 Lucio Fontana: Paintings, Sculptures, Works on Paper, Ben Brown Fine Arts, London, UK

2007 Via Crucis - Lucio Fontana, Museo de Arte de Sao Paulo Assis Chateaubriand - MASP, Sao Paulo, Brazil

2007 Lucio Fontana Sculptor, Castello di San Giorgio, Torino, Italy

2007 Living, Looking, Making: Sculpture by Giacometti, Fontana, Twombly, Serra, Gagosian Gallery, London, UK

2006 Lucio Fontana, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City, NY 

2006 Lucio Fontana: Venice/New York”, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy

2006 Lucio Fontana: Alle Radici Dello Spazialismo, Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimo, New York, NY

2004 Lucio Fontana, Museum Franz Gertsch, Burgdorf, Switzerland

2000 Lucio Fontana, Sperone Westwater, New York, NY

1999-00 Minimalia: An Italian Version in 20th Century Art, P.S. 1, New York, NY

1998-99 Gold: Gothic Masters and Lucio Fontana, Compagnia Di Belle Arti (& other locations) Milan, Italy

1998 Lucio Fontana, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy

1998 Lucio Fontana. Entre Materia y Espacio, La Fundación 'la Caixa' in collaboration with the Museo National Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain

1996-97 Lucio Fontana: Retrospektive, Kunsthalle, Frankfurt, Germany; Museum Moderner Kunst Stifung Ludwig, Vienna, Austria (solo)

1987 Lucio Fontana, Musée national d'art moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France

1987 Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands

1977 Lucio Fontana Retrospective, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City, NY 

1966 Retrospective, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, The Netherlands

1959 V. Bienal Sao Paulo, Brazil

1930 Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy

Born in Rosario, Argentina on February 19th, 1899

Died in Varese, Italy on September 7th, 1968

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